Veteran Mike Cameron’s abrupt decision to retire on the cusp of spring training will have some impact on the Nationals’ 2012 roster.
Cameron, 39, had signed a minor league deal with Washington in December, and one popular theory had him platooning with Rick Ankiel in center field this year, allowing the ballclub to send Bryce Harper back to the minors for further seasoning. His departure doesn’t mean that Harper makes the big club out of spring training, but it may provide some of the other non-roster right-handed hitters like Brett Carroll and Jason Michaels a longer look.
It may also be the impetus for a trade that brings yet another outfielder to the Nationals.
If you buy the rumors that the Nats will trade lefty starter John Lannan somewhere during spring training, perhaps a right-handed bat will be the return. We’re all in the speculation business this time of year, and that makes as much sense as anything else.
Cameron retires after 17 seasons in the majors, doing time with the White Sox, Reds, Mariners, Mets, Padres, Brewers, Red Sox and Marlins. He batted .249 with 278 home runs. On May 2, 2002, he hit four home runs in a single game for Seattle in a game versus the White Sox in Chicago.